A juror in the Vybz Kartel trial testified last week that on two occasions, accused juror Livingston Caine tried to convince his colleagues to return a not-guilty verdict in the entertainer’s murder trial, saying ‘they are prominent DJs and we must let them go home’.
The witness, gave the testimony during her evidence-in-chief in the trial before the Kingston and St Andrew Parish Court.
The accused was arrested and charged with five counts of attempting to pervert the course of justice and one count of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.
During the cross-examination, the witness revealed that the defendant (Caine) was oftentimes quiet during their discussions and that he would leave whenever the court would break to tend to his business.
She, however said that she has never seen him behave differently from anyone else.
Caine’s attorney, Queen’s Counsel Valrie Neita-Robertson, objected on the basis of relevance and argued that there is nothing that speaks to her client’s behaviour in the statement.
Parish Court Judge Maxine Ellis then asked the witness to step outside. She later told the court that the Crown has its case.
According to the Observer, Neita-Robertson argued that there are rules to be followed when the prosecution is taking evidence. “There is no follow-up. She is carrying the witness to a place I don’t know. Depending on what she said, I would have to take further instructions from my client,” Neita-Robertson said.
The prosecutor then made an unsuccessful request to adjourn the matter for further disclosure.
The witness testified that, prior to the verdict, Caine told the foreman that he wanted to speak with her in private, and said that after 20 to 25 minutes the foreman returned to the juror room and said: “He approached me.”
She said that after the foreman consulted with a fellow juror she locked the door, took out her cellular phone and turned it on. She revealed that she was instructed to listen, which she did. She further revealed to the court that the voice sounded similar to Caine’s voice and that the foreman subsequently reported it to the Clerk of Court.
An 11-member jury found all four men guilty in March 2014. Another man was exonerated of all charges due to lack of evidence.
Vybz Kartel will have to serve 35 years before he is eligible for parole. The “Romping Shop” deejay is appealing the conviction.
The juror corruption trial continues on March 20.